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Tesla's Gigafactory in Berlin: Innovation in Germany

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Tesla – Founded in 2003, the company is considered a pioneer amongst producers of electric cars. Many years their products aimed at a high price segment, now Tesla is ready to take over the broader mass market. After the first three factories in Nevada, New York, and China, Tesla is now also coming to Europe. Its fourth Gigafactory will be up and running in Grünheide, located south-east of Berlin, by 2021. Besides electric cars, it will produce batteries, powertrains and participate in Teslas extensive research and innovation projects. Tesla has fastly been climbing up LinkedIns ‘most in-demand companies to work for’ list and with over 500,000 applications per year, there will be a lot of competition for the new positions at the Gigafactory in Berlin.

Jobs at Tesla: How to start your career

Working for Tesla can mean a lot of different things. Jobs range from developing new technologies to selling energy-storing batteries. From being an engineer to working as a data analyst. Gaby Toledano, Tesla's chief people officer, however, said that there is one thing all of Tesla's hires have in common. “We attract people who believe in what we are doing because we are mission-driven and we’re making history.” (Source) Elon Musk, CEO at Tesla, has confirmed multiple times that Tesla does not require its employees to hold a degree nor a high school diploma. “If somebody graduated from a great university, that may be an indication that they will be capable of great things, but it’s not necessarily the case.” (Source) What Tesla looks for in its employees, however, is evidence of exceptional ability. If someone has continuously achieved exceptional goals during the course of their life, then it is very likely that they will keep on achieving greatness in the future.

Examples for this are Bill Gates or Steve Jobs – they showed the world that you can become a worldwide renowned innovator, even without finishing college. The big advantage you might have when applying to companies like Tesla is the fact that they are trying to do things no one has done before. To achieve this, they need all kinds of different people with a wide variety of skills and knowledge. “A lot is done in-house, so there are plenty of niche jobs. And that’s why it's okay to come from a non-traditional background”, explains Cindy Nicola, Tesla's vice president of global recruiting (Source).

In case Tesla has been on your list of dream employers, we looked up the three trickiest questions asked during job interviews at Tesla, to prepare you a little bit for the extensive application process: 

  1. You’re standing on the surface of Earth. You walk one mile south, one mile west, and one mile north. You end up exactly where you started. Where are you?
  2. You're on a small rowboat in a lake with a rock in the boat. You throw the rock overboard, does the water level in the lake rise or fall?
  3. Why are manhole covers round? 

Check out our Article "Tesla, Google, Microsoft and Co. – The 9 most popular interview questions" to see the answers to these and some more questions asked by Tesla, Google, Microsoft, and Co!

Tesla is coming to Germany – What does that mean?

By building the fourth Gigafactory in Grünheide, Brandenburg, Tesla is settling down right in the back yard of BMW, Mercedes, Volkswagen Group and many other worldwide renowned German car manufacturers. Tesla is currently the market leader when it comes to electric cars, Germany included. In 2019 Tesla sales figures increased by over 460% compared to 2018 (Source). Although competition will most definitely increase, car expert Ferdinand Dudenhöffer considers Teslas move as “good news” – also for the current German automobile giants. “Competition always accelerates speed and efficiency.” Dudenhöffer further believes that the Gigafactory will drive electromobility 100 times faster than any political summit ever could (Source). Peter Altmaier, Germany’s minister of economy, called it a ‘milestone’ for the development of electromobility. Germany is given the chance to become an international center for the production of electric cars and batteries (Source).

Many German cities, as well as cities in other countries, have sought after the prestige project. Jörg Steinbach, the economics minister of Brandenburg, the state Grünheide is located in, was the one who finally convinced Elon Musk to make a decision. The site itself has already been approved for a factory once when BWM was looking for a new property. Since they chose to settle down elsewhere, Steinbach has had a relatively easy game passing the permits for Tesla through within four weeks, rather than the customary 11 months. The Mayor of Grünheide also stands behind the project and stated that he is hoping to attract more young people back out of the city and into the outlying districts (Source).

Jobs at Grünheide: Who is the Gigafactory still looking for?

Although the construction of the new Gigafactory has not even started yet, there are wild speculations over the jobs it is going to create. With a size of 470 soccer pitches, it is going to need a whole lot of people to keep the prestige project up and running. Between 6000 and 7000 new jobs are supposed to be created in the factory alone. Additionally, a few hundred positions are under discussion concerning the extensive research and innovation projects Tesla is carrying out as well. Tesla already published the first 42 jobs on its website, however without any information past the job title. What they require and which tasks exactly the positions are supposed to fulfill is not further elaborated on. A big question everyone keeps asking is how Tesla plans on being compliant with the German labor laws which seem to not be matching Tesla's high-intensity 24/7 work ethic. Oliver Höbel, head of the IG Metall union, however, is very happy about the decision and looks forward to working with Tesla “to create the perfect climate that the project becomes a full success.” (Source)

Are you looking for new opportunities – not only at Tesla? Or have you changed your mind and want to switch directions? Then use MoBerries to find your next job. Simply upload your CV and start getting matched from our AI-based algorithm.


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